(1938-01-15) Finding A Balance
Details for Finding A Balance
Summary: Eibhlin tutors Donovan in Charms; they learn a bit about one another's familial issues.
Date: Tue Jan 15, 1938
Location: Library
Related: -

True to his word Donovan is sitting in the library, with his charms book out in front of him. He's actually selected one of the more private areas, the students who usually study here have decided it's probably best to be elsewhere as the large Gryffindor attempts to practice his charms. Currently, his wand is down, and he is glaring at a page, attempting, no doubt, to intimidate the book into making sense.

There's the soft sound of glass tapping against glass as Eibhlin enters the library. Not loud enough to earn anyone's ire, but it is there. Just a soft tink-tink-tink as she moves, eminating forth from her satchel. The redhead has her hair tied back loosely at the nape of her neck with a bronze ribbon. She's not wearing her robe, but does have her sweater — edged in Ravenclaw colors — on, with sleeves rolled up a few inches. As she spots Donovan, she approaches slowly from the front. Giving him the opportunity to spot her.

Glancing around in frustration Donovan sees Evie. The look on his face is some sort of mix between incredulity, frustration and anger, closing his eyes and exhaling loudly several times seems to calm the Gryffindor. Donovan is in his school attire (minus the cloak) but his tie and top button are loosened giving him some space to breathe. Once calm(er?) Don will smile wanely at Evie, "Good Evening Shine." He says blandly.

A frown edges its way across Eibhlin's features. She approaches slowly and lifts her bag up over her head, letting it settle — carefully — onto a chair next to the one across from the Gryffindor. She settles into that particular seat herself. "Is it that troublesome?"

Donovan laughs bitterly, "No… it's not, I'm just trying to cram five years worth of studies into a month… everytime I have to go back to study a concept I should have learned in my third year… or earlier this year…" He sighs heavily. "No… I'm just… annoyed with myself for not focusing sooner."

There's a sympathetic flinch at Donovan's apologies. "Hogwarts is a bit lenient in that, aren't they? There's no real -need- to excel until the fifth year and by then…" She shifts her seat slightly. "For some subjects, if you never wanted to go further, I guess it's alright. I find myself not caring what grade I get in History… but Charms, yeah. That's pretty important."

There's a sympathetic flinch at Donovan's explanation. "Hogwarts is a bit lenient in that, aren't they? There's no real -need- to excel until the fifth year and by then…" Eibhlin shifts her seat slightly. "For some subjects, if you never wanted to go further, I guess it's alright. I find myself not caring what grade I get in History… but Charms, yeah. That's pretty important."

"Oh… it's not about the OWLS." Donovan says, frowning down at the book in his hands, "I guess I just realized that… I'm not going to be able to play quidditch forever, you don't see old players." Donovan shakes his head implying that there is something else he needs to do, "What do you want to do when you graduate?" He's clearly had enough with the book for the current moment.

Elbows rest on the table and fingers lace together, Eibhlin leaning forward slightly to peer at the book Donovan is reviewing. Perhaps to get a glimpse of what's giving him trouble. "If you're a good enough player and smart with your money, you can live off of it once you retire." A pause and she glances up at the Gryffindor. "Or just marry into some rich family." The slight twitch of her lips is indicative of her words being meant as a joke. "Me? Oh…" Brow furrows then and she draws in a long breath, sitting up straight. "I… honestly don't know."

"True… and that is the plan." Donovan tilts the book up so that Evie can see it's just the standard book of spells grade 5. "I don't want to marry for money… I want to marry a girl I love." He'll run a hand through his hair, "Hoping to marry into money then?" He asks the girl with a matching twitch of his lips.

"Oh, oh no," Eibhlin says, lifting hands and shaking them slightly. As if to ward off the entire concept. "I… to be honest, I can barely consider getting married to begin with. I'm young, but I just… don't think I could manage it." The plight of a girl who grew up without a father. "I don't want to end up like my mother." She lets shoulders twitch in a shrug, lowering hands to the table's surface again. "I hope you find your lady love."

Donovan shakes his head, "I don't imagine that'll happen for a bit." He grins at the redhead. "Much to the dismay of every boy I see you with." He shakes his head, "No, that was mean… I'm sorry Evie, I'm in a foul mood. I know what it's like to miss a parent… my Mm." Donovan stutters at the last, "My mum quit on me too."

A bit of red seeps in high on Eibhlin's cheeks. She knows how things have been and she'd change it if she could. Unfortunately… she hasn't found a way to make that happen yet. "I'm still a couple years off from graduating, never mind deciding what I'll do after." Her brow furrows a bit at the last and sympathy etches itself into her pale, freckled features. The flush seeps away. "I'm sorry," she says quietly. "I… never knew my father. Apparently he left the day I was born… and my mother's never been the same."

Running a hand through his hair Donovan nods his head, He doesn't know how to respond to Evie's father so he'll tell his story instead, "They wanted to have more children… I was the first. She gave birth four more times, all four of them were stillborn. Da says that when they told her the fourth had died she died inside too… She hasn't said anything since then, she doesn't eat, doesn't take herself out to the privy… My only memories of her are of a statue. Sometimes… I wish I didn't have any memories of her at all."

"I'm sorry," Eibhlin says, frowning somewhat. As she recalls distant conversations with references to his mother, she frowns more. There's a long sigh and her shoulders slump, causing her to lean forward onto the table a bit. "So neither of us grew up with a model for the opposite gender."

"No… I guess not." Donovan says reaching out to rub Evie's shoulder, he stops himself halfway there though. Retracting his hand. "Was your mum a witch?" He asks, not really sure how he never knew.

"No," Eibhlin says with a small shake of her head. "They believe it all came from my father. Tidbits she's told me over the years seem to confirm that…" The teen looks down to her hands, twining thumbs around one another. Wind one way, then the next. "My first year, I was handled like a Muggle-born. Got a liaison and everything." She seems a bit uncomfortable talking of it, like she never really has before.

Donovan nods his head, "Yeah… I remember seeing you out with her, I think we had the same Lady." He looks down at the book in front of him, "I've looked into it… if I had been old enough to get her magical care they could have saved…" He frowns slightly, "my siblings, and then my mom wouldn't have quit. Can you imagine? If only I'd been a bit older I could have had a couple brothers and a sister."

"It's possible," Eibhlin says faintly, biting into her lip a bit. "But… not always. I've heard from some other students about similar things and there's some things magic can solve and some it cannot." She manages a bit of a smile towards him, but it fades quickly. "It's… not good to think on what might have been, I think."

"I know." Donovan nods his head in agreement, his voice is strained. The anger having turned in towards other emotions. He'll just stare at the book in silence for about a minute, "Right… charms. All the amazing and different uses for Accio." His grin is the normal Donovan one the anger and sadness having been pushed aside, "It's all about getting things to come to you, so I figure you'll be a champ at it." He wags his eyebrows at Evie.

There's another flush and Eibhlin screws up be-freckled nose, giving Donovan a -look- for that comment. "Which ones are you struggling with? I can help with pronunciation, certainly… Wandwork I'm not as good at, but I can certainly try." The change in focus is a good one and she seems to relax some. Her shoulders, at least, release some of their tension.

"Oh, I'm great with wandwork, It's just my pronounciation that is total… well, not good." Donovan says with a grin, "All of them actually… I can't seem to get anything to come to work."

"Maybe we can help each other, then," Eibhlin says with a small smile. "I can never seem to get the wandwork right. My wrist always goes off in some other direction, instead of a nice flourish." She's pretty much the opposite of athletic. The teen shifts slightly in her seat. "Well, which ones do you find yourself needing to use most often?"

"Accio broom… accio jacket…" Donovan grins, "I think if I could start on something simple and get that working I could figure the rest out." He picks up his wand and makes the movement that is part of the Accio spell, "It's like that, just don't ask me to say it. Because last time I did that Second year in hufflepuff… Mablethrop or whatever it was, got hives all over her arm."

Digging in her satchel, Eibhlin surfaces with a quill. One with a blunt end. "I haven't gotten around to shaping this again," she explains and sets it on the table, leaning to place it a bit away from them. "Try with this," she says to Donovan, watching the movements he makes with the wand. "On top of the word, you have to have a very clear image of what you're summoning. When you say broom, imaginine -your- broom. The spots you've worn in the handle as you fly, the nicks in the foot rests…" She gives that a moment: "And think about the cadence of the word. Charms always have a… song-like quality to them, I find. Acc-IO. Emphasis on the end. So it's down… and up."

"Right so… focus on the feather, that particular feather." Donovan's eyes close, the corners screwing up as he pictures the feather he then opens his eyes and with a flick of his wrist and a "Ass-IO feather." He tries to bring the quill to him, but to no avail, "You know… maybe I'm going about this the wrong way, I'm asking for a feather… but it isn't a feather. Not really."

"It's much the same with transfiguration," Eibhlin admits with a small smile. "Quinn really helped me understand that. There's… two sides of any object, basically. It's… form and function, as well as what makes it up. This table, for example…" She knocks on the surface gently. "It's a table and it holds items on its surface. That's the form and function… Beyond that, it's wood. A darker wood, marked with use and age. Different chunks of wood shaped, sanded, and formed into the shape of a table." She tilts her head towards the quill. "That's a feather. It's a mottled brown feather, a bit ragged with use. The end is blunt, but it's the overall form of a quill, used to write with."

"It's not just a feather in the shape of a quill though… it's your feather, that you shaped into a quill… we are more than just the raw materials we're also the sum of our experiences… it's history as well as it's present are what makes that feather, that feather." Donovan closes his eyes, and then flicking his wrist he calls out, "Accio Quill." The quill titters for a moment and then jerks across the table in lurching motions until it rests in front of Donovan. The tall chaser grins triumphantly.

"Hm. I hadn't even thought of that." Eibhlin grins a bit, tilting her head in a nod. "See, there you go. Like when we practiced Silencio and the Professor said you have to -mean- it. That's not just desiring the other person to be silent, but also imagining them silenced. Unable to talk and trying to."

"Too true, too true." Donovan says before he replaces the feather in the middle of the table, "Alright, you're turn. Lets see that wrist of yours do magic." He makes the gesture again for Evie to see, "That's what it is supposed to look like. I always focus on the tip of the wand… make sure it goes where it's supposed to be. So watch the tip while I do it again." He makes the motion again, slowly so she can follow it. "Don't worry about your hand, it knows what to do, just make the tip go where it needs to be."

"Oh." Eibhlin blinks a bit, looking a bit uncertain. She hadn't quite expected it to be her turn at any point. She swallows a bit, watching the motions Donovan makes. She draws a slow breath and pulls her wand out. There's a slight turn of it between fingers before she starts making the motions. She uses her wrist a bit more than her whole arm, which does mess up those flourishes a bit.

Watching Evie's movements he ponders for a moment, "Do you have a ribbon?" He asks, as he reaches into the his book bag, looking for something.

"I do," Eibhlin says, brow furrowing somewhat. She reaches behind her with her left hand, tugging at the ribbon in her hair. A moment later, the bow comes free. Her hair spills about her shoulders in soft waves and she holds the loose piece of fabric out to Donovan. "Why?"

Finding what he's looking for, he pulls out a small pen made to match his new wand. He takes the ribbon and ties the pen to Evie's wrist, wrapping it sort of like a splint, but just to force her to use her arm instead of her wrist. "There, try it again. You're using your wrist too much and that will help make sure you're moving your arm, not your hand."

Says Donovan.

As the pen is tied to her wrist, Eibhlin looks confused. She frowns once it's in place, trying to flex her wrist. She fails and glances up at Donovan, uncertainty in her gaze. "Are you sure?" There's a small sigh of resignation and she tries the movements again. This time much more fluid.

"Excellent, see, that's the motion right there." Donovan says with a grin, "Now… try to cast it." He smiles encouragingly at the girl.

"With the … pen?" Eibhlin seems skeptical, but she exhales a long breath. "Alright." The redhead lifts a hand to brush her hair behind her ear, lifting hand in preparation. "Accio quill," she states firmly, executing the wand flourish. Thankfully, with her pronounciation being on point — natural linguist for the win! — the quill wobbles only a bit before floating to her.

Donovan watches Evie as she casts the spell, his eyes following the motion of her arm and trying to remember the way she pronounces things, "And that, as they say, is that." He winks at Evie. "Just gotta learn how that feels with the splint on… and then you can take it off, I want to see you do the flourish… twenty times." He sounds like a coach telling his student to run laps.

"My arm would get so tired," Eibhlin says with a wrinkle of her nose. "That's why I'm… not sure about this Paladin's Challenge thing. I have to hope I can win right off, or I'll end up losing because I get tired." There's a reason she avoids going outside in the winter too much. Prone to colds, she likely is.

"Well, you can always build muscle." Donovan says seriously as he considers Evie for a moment, "I totally forgot about that…" He glances down at the book infront of himself, considering. "Why'd you join that?"

"I doubt it," Eibhlin says with another nose-wrinkle. "If I haven't from running up and down all those stairs, I never will." She undoes the ribbon after a few more attempted flourishes, each better than the last. Donovan's pen is held out to him. "Because I'd like to learn how to duel."

Donovan takes the pen and nods his head slowly, considering it. "Makes sense, I guess." He yawns and glances at the clock, "Well, I better get to bed. Thank you for your help with everything." Donovan shoves the book across from him into his knapsack and then slinging it over his shoulder picks up a few other things. He'll ruffle Evie's hair as he walks past her, "Don't stay up too late eh?"

"If you find yourself struggling with any others," Eibhlin says with a brief smile, "let me know. If it's one I'm decent with, we'll work it out." She shrinks down a bit under the ruffled hair, setting to smoothing it back and tying the ribbon in place once he's gone.

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